Posted by Ken Kurtis on November 14, 2000 at 12:10:44:
In Reply to: Was it solo or deep air that caused this fatality??????? posted by MHK on November 14, 2000 at 11:41:22:
IMHO, I wouldn't tag it just to solo diving OR deep air but bad judgment, which includes the decision to dive deep, the decision to dive on air, and the decision to dive alone.
And, if I'm reading the accident report correctly, the guy was in a cave system where he planned to go to a depth of 60 meters (roughly 200 feet) but was found at a depth of 105 meters (almost 350 feet) so it sounds like he either penetrated a LOT further than he intended or got turned around and lost or just plain wasn't paying attention to the dive. Either way "Plan-your-dive-and-dive-your-plan" seemingly wasn't followed. (Did he at least have a reel and line - which I would think would have led rescuers right to him? Not clear, at least to me, from the account.)
And not to get into the semantics game, but I think it's hard to say definitely that it was this or that, but I do think it's important to focus on the judgment part. It's easy to be a Monday-morning quarterback (or in this case, a Tuesday-morning quarterback), but this guy seems to have made a lot of bad decisions (too deep, wrong gas for the depth, no buddy) that probably all combined when things went wrong to contribute to his untimely demise.
On top of that he was an instructor which just goes to point out again that (1) bad decisions can be made at any level of training and experience, and (2) no one's bullet-proof.
Very sad story no matter how you assign the blame.
NAUI Instr. #5936
Co-owner, Reef Seekers Dive Co.
Beverly Hills, Ca.
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